Know Your People by ProQuest

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									            THE FIRE SCENE                                                  >>>
By JOHN J. SALKA Jr.




Know Your People
Make Sure You Know Who’s Riding on Your Rig

T
         his column is directed primarily                          Let’s stop and look back at why we need         In larger career departments, com-
         at company officers. I have stated                   to know our people. You need to know ex-        panies are often manned with firefighters
         this many times and I will repeat                    actly who is on your fire engine because        from other companies or other battalions.
it again. Company officers are the most                       two hours from now, your company may            There can be one or even two firefight-
important people in the fire service. They                    be involved in a collapse or a member may       ers on an engine or truck company that
are at every operation. They are responsi-                    become lost or fall through a                                 have never been there before.
ble for training their firefighters. They are
the interior eyes and ears of the incident
                                                              roof into the fire. You need to
                                                              know the name and assigned
                                                                                                   You are                  Operationally, that may work
                                                                                                                            just fine. Firefighters are well
commander. They are often the first to
arrive and to initiate tactical operations
                                                              company and physical fea-
                                                              tures of the people whose
                                                                                                 responsible                trained and perform well even
                                                                                                                            when working in unfamiliar
at just about every type of incident we
respond to. They manage our firehouses,
                                                              lives you are responsible for.
                                                                   What if you are an offi-
                                                                                                for the most                 territory. But what if some-
                                                                                                                            thing happens? You as the
apparatus, tools and equipment and they
are directly responsible for the safety
                                                              cer of the Mineola Volunteer
                                                              Fire Department and you re-
                                                                                                  valuable                  company officer must make it
                                                                                                                            your business to find out what
and survival of our most valuable asset,
the firefighters, which brings us to this
                                                              spond to a call at 3 A.M. for
                                                              a house fire? You get to the
                                                                                                resource we                 their abilities are and what is
                                                                                                                            expected of them.
month’s headline, “Know Your People.”
     What exactly does that mean? It
                                                              firehouse, grab your gear,
                                                              climb into the officer’s seat
                                                                                                  have, our                      We often talk about ac-
                                                                                                                            countability and how we are
means if you are the company officer rid-
ing a fire apparatus and standing on the
                                                              and start talking with the ap-
              
								
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